These Crispy Spring Rolls stuffed with fresh red and green cabbage, carrots, cilantro and chopped chicken are pan fried to create the perfectly crisp outer coating.
If you're looking for a quick, easy and versatile appetizer to serve your family or at your next social gathering, you gotta try these perfectly wrapped spring rolls. They're made with only a handful of fresh ingredients and the thin crispy wrapper provides the perfect crunch to each and every bite. They're so fun to make and are very economical.
If you're interesting in learning how to make this easy spring rolls recipe, follow along as I walk you through step-by-step.
- Chicken (boneless skinless chicken breast or thighs)
- Red cabbage
- Green cabbage (savoy or napa)
- Green onion (white used for filling, green used for garnish) - optional
- Frozen spring roll wrappers
- Sweet and sour sauce, soy sauce, or coco aminos for dipping
What's in a Spring roll
Although spring rolls is a versatile appetizer, I recommend filling it with vegetables that do not have a high water content or vegetables that are wet. In other words, the filling shouldn't be too moist or wet as this can cause the thin wrapper to become soggy which can prevent it from becoming crisp and golden brown when pan fried.
The beauty of these spring rolls is that they can be made vegetarian or non-vegetarian. Why not make a batch of vegetarian and non-vegetarian rolls to accommodate all of your guests whether or not you're hosting a small or large gathering.
Make vegetarian: Fill with carrots, different types of cabbage, bell peppers, bamboo shoots and fresh herbs such as cilantro or parsley.
Make non-vegetarian: Add your choice of protein to the veggies such as: cooked boneless skinless chicken breast or thighs or ground chicken, cooked ground pork or pork butt, cooked beef, or cooked shrimp.
Difference between spring roll and egg roll
Spring roll wrappers are found in the freezer section of the grocery store; however, if you can't find them there you can definitely find them in the freezer section at a local Asian market. In fact, that's where I found the spring roll wrappers for this recipe.
Keep in mind that these are not egg roll wrappers. Egg roll wrappers are much thicker and are dipped in egg for richness. When fried, the outer surface of the egg roll wrapper is crispy and appear bubbly.
How to make spring rolls at home
Spring Roll Wrappers: The spring roll wrappers should be completely defrosted before assembling and pan frying. You can place the pack in the refrigerator to defrost overnight then the day of remove the pack from the fridge or simply place the pack on the counter top to defrost on the day you plan on making the spring rolls.
Filling: Thinly slice the cabbage, cut the carrots into matchsticks, and chop the cilantro. Add your protein of choice (cooked chicken, pork, beef, or shrimp).
For this recipe, I added cooked chicken breast that I brined in salted water for about 30 minutes then seared in a cast iron skilled until the internal temperature reached 165 degrees F. Once the chicken breast was done, I allowed it to rest for 10 minutes then I chopped into small cubes.
Assemble: Place a wrapper on a chopping board, rub the edges of the wrapper with egg wash, place about a tablespoon of filling in the center of the wrapper and roll. Continue filling the other wrappers.
Cook: Place oil in a frying pan, cast iron skillet or saute pan. When hot, gently place the spring rolls in the hot oil and allow it to fry on both side for a few minutes on both sides.
Please refer to the video within the post to see how to fill the spring rolls.
How to store and reheat
Store remaining cooked spring rolls in an air tight container or large ziploc bag and store in the fridge for up to 3 days.
To reheat, remove the spring rolls from the fridge, put on a baking sheet and cook under the broiler for a few minutes. Please watch closely while under the broiler. Broil for a 3 to 4 minutes. They will become crisp and golden brown.
Crispy Spring Rolls Recipe
- Frying pan, cast iron skillet or saute pan
- Large bowl for brining chicken breast
- Chef's knife
- Cutting board for cutting vegetables
- Small bowl for egg wash
- 1 pack frozen spring roll wrapper
- 2 cups Napa cabbage (thinly sliced)
- 2 cups red cabbage (thinly sliced)
- 1 cup fresh cilantro (finely chopped)
- 1 carrot (cut into matchsticks)
- 1 stalk green onion (white part used in wrapper; green part used as garnish (optional))
Brine for Chicken Breast
- ¼ cup kosher salt
- 6 cups water
Seared Chicken Breast
- 4 inches grape-seed oil (or olive oil - reserve 2-½ tablespoon to sear chicken and remaining for frying pan)
- 3 tsp kosher salt
- 2 tsp black pepper
- 4 tsp smoked paprika
- Make brine and place chicken breast tender in the brine and allow to brine for at least 30 minutes up to 24 hours.
- Meanwhile, thinly slice the cabbage, remove the outer skin of the carrot and cut into matchsticks, finely chop the green onion.
- Remove the chicken from the brine and rinse under colder water and place on a clean plate or pan and dry thoroughly with paper towels. Season with kosher salt, black pepper, and smoked paprika.
- Add 2-½ tablespoons grape-seed oil to cast iron skillet. When hot, add the chicken breast tenders to the skillet and saute on both sides for 6 minutes or until no longer pink. Remove and place on a clean plate and allow to rest for 10 minutes or so. Using kitchen shears, cut the cooked chicken breast into small cubes.
- Place wrapper on a flat surface with a pointy end facing you. Add about 2 tablespoons of filling to the center of a wrapper. Fold the 2 sides inward or towards the center then roll firmly from one end to the next. Place the rolls on a plate and continue rolling until all done.
- Serve immediately and with a sauce such as soy, sweet and sour sauce, or coco aminos for dipping.